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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 16, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas FELSHerald-Zeitung -L -__J —  -_—_i__-..................................................... ..ii — -      p-gf-gill—                ■   ..... Mi Vol. 149 No. 64    18    pgs.    in    2    sections    February    16,    2000 Wednesday Serving Comal County since 1852 50 centsBed tax petition submitted; council calls special meeting By Peri Stone-Palmquist Staff writer New Braunfels residents who hope to limit the city’s use of bed tax revenue submitted their petition initiative Tuesday, although some say it’s unnecessary after Monday’s city council meeting. Because the initiative has more than 30 percent of registered voters who voted in the last general election, city council must consider Friday the proposal, which eliminates using the city’s 30 percent of bed tax revenue for a convention center. A special meeting to consider the initia tive has been called for 6 p.m. Friday at the New Braunfels Municipal Building, 424 S. Castell Ave., Meeting Room D. In excess of 1,100 registered voters signed the petition, according to petition organizers. The city will verify the signatures today; at least 929 are needed. “Council will not approve this,” Mayor Stoney Williams said Tuesday. “It will go to a vote.” If council votes against the petition ordinance, the issue must go to a vote May 6 — the same time residents will consider the $34.4 million bond issue approved Monday. The petition asks the city to spend a min imum of 30.714 percent of its 7 percent bed tax revenue for maintenance and improvement of the civic center, historical restoration and preservation projects, arts and/or city-operated promotional programs allowed by state law. Hotel/motel tax is a dedicated tax and must be spent on the promotion of tourism by state law. The Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce, Inc., which receives 55 percent of the tax for tourism promotion, has proposed that council save more than 20 percent for two years and use it toward a down payment for a convention center. At its meeting Monday, council voted to “freeze” about 20 percent of revenue made from its hotel/motel tax for two years. It will decide in two years how to spend die money. Petition organizer Betty Dunkin said downtown needed that money sooner — two years was too long. But city attorney Floyd Akers said council legally could change Monday’s decision at any time and unfreeze that money. Williams said that if a “worthy project” came along, council would consider doing just that. Because of this flexibility, chamber pres ident Michael Meek said a vote on the petition initiative wasn’t necessary. The petition supporters shouldn’t go forward with the initiative, he said. “Downtown can approach council at any time with a proposal,” he said. “But the chamber won’t approach council during this time. We won’t usurp the two-year contract.” Meek said several of the petition supporters as well as downtown business owners actually stood up at Monday’s meeting supporting the two-year wait.See TAX/5A NBISD hires Rhoades as new football coach By Heather Todd Staff Writer New Braunfels High School football defensive coordinator Rick Rhoades will have some big shoes to fill this fall, but he says he is ready for the challenge. New Braunfels Independent School District trustees unanimously approved hiring Rhoades as the new Unicorn head football coach and athletic director Tuesday night — a position left vacant by the retirement of Tim Kingsbury last week. Kingsbury announced Friday he would step down from the coaching position to spend more time with his family — including watching his son, Kliff Kingsbury, start as quarterback for Texas Tech University next year. Tim and his wife, Sally, also have an older son, Klint Kingsbury, who will graduate from Texas A&M University this May. Kingsbury, who served as head football coach and athletic director at NBHS since 1995, will remain with the district in a teaching or administrative capacity another year. Kingsbury started his more than 20-year career in NBISD in 1974 when he took a football coaching position at New Braunfels Middle School. In 1991, Kingsbury took the defensive coordinator position at San Antonio Madison High School. Kingsbury returned to NBHS in 1995 as head football coach, bringing Rhoades with him as his defensive coordinator. On Tuesday night, Rhoades thanked Kingsbury for bringing him to New Braunfels five years ago. “My experiences and my family’s experience here is something we'll never forget and I am deeply indebted to you,” he said. “I want to thank the board and Superintendent Ron Reaves for giving me the opportunity to coach and be the athletic director. I believe that we have one of the greatest schools in the state and the greatest kids in the state,” Rhoades said. Rhoades said his main goal was to make all athletics at NBHS a source of pride for the community and school. “Other sports are just as important as football. We have a great athletic program. We are strong in all sports,” he said. Rhoades also added he would ensure all athletic programs were “taken care of.” Rhoades will maintain his current duties until he takes over as athletic director and head football coach July I. Rhoades’ appointment Tuesday night fulfilled the w ishes of players, coaches and Kingsbury to find a replacement within the existing coaching staff. Kingsbury said Tuesday night he recommended Rhoades to the coaching position after he decided to retire. “I’m tickled to death he is going to take over. I think it’s best for the kids, the athletic program and the coaches,” Kingsbury said. “This is the smoothest transition I could have asked for and I think it’s See COACH/5A RHOADES Swimming to stateJunior Shana Shedrock is one of several Cougar swimmers advancing to state competition this month./8AInside Abby................................7A Classifieds......................5-8B Comics...............................2B Crossword..........................7A Forum.................................6A Local/Metro........................4A Movies................................7A Obituaries...........................3A Sports............................8-10A Today.................................2A Television.............................2B Key Code 76 Sexual assault case remains unsolved From staff reports Comal County Sheriffs Office detectives continue to search for the man who sexually assaulted a Spring Branch area woman and burglarized her home Friday night in the Indian Hills subdivision. The woman was attacked about 10:30 p.m. when she entered her residence in the Indian Hills subdivision off U.S. 281 near Farm-to-Market Road 306. The man bound the woman, assaulted her and departed the residence after about two hours. The victim was transported to a San Antonio hospital where she was treated and later released. Sgt. Brent Paullus with the Comal County Sheriff’s Office declined to release many more details, citing the ongoing investigation. Some Indian Hills residents told the Herald-Zeitung they heard rumors that similar attacks had been reported near Blanco. “We are not aware of anything like that in Blanco,” Paullus said. “It’s not being investigated as being linked to anything else.” Anyone with information about Friday’s assault and burglary is asked to contact CCSO detective Tommy Ward at 620-3417. Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest and grand jury indictment of the person responsible for commission of the crime. All calls are confidential and the caller will remain anonymous. Residents need to be aware of their surroundings and who their neighbors are, Paullus said. “They need to know who is supposed to be in the neighborhood,” Paullus said. “If they see suspicious people in the area, they need to report it and not wait until three weeks later.” By Erin MAGRUDER Staff Writer New Braunfels resident Javier Morales can thank his sister Erhn-da for his new lease on life. After spending more than one year on dialysis, 35-year-old Morales was given a new kidney by Erlinda. Erlinda, 37, said she spent no time debating whether to undergo the four-hour transplant operation, which took place Jan. 25, and the weeks of often uncomfortable recovery that lie ahead. “I only have one brother, and I wanted to give him a longer life,” she said. “Before the operation he was very grouchy, and now he is a happy man.” Javier Morales first was diagnosed with kidney failure for unknown reasons more than a year ago and was told by doctors he would need a kidney transplant about six months later, he said. “I would go in for dialysis three times a week for three hours, and I was always tired and thirsty because I was not allowed to drink many liquids. I missed the little stuff like crushed ice from Dairy Queen,” Javier Morales said. “When I found out I would need the operation, I didn’t even have to ask my sister — she just volunteered.” Erlinda said, Javier was especially nice to her in the months ERIN MAGRUDER/Herald-Zeitung Erlinda Morales, far right, donated a kidney to brother, Javier Morales, left. Mother Delia R. Morales, middle, says faith in God pulled them through the ordeal. before the operation, which took place at Santa Rosa Hospital in San Antonio. “I would say to Javier, ‘Don’t make me mad, or I won’t give you my kidney,’” Erlinda said. Although the recovery process is slow, both Javier and Erlinda Morales said they felt good and expected to be back to IOO percent soon. Javier, who has two sons from a previous marriage, ages 11 and 15, said the experience brought him closer to his family and changed his priorities in life. “I plan to do more now,” Javier Morales said. “I want to do some traveling with my kids, and I want to go back to school. All I did before was work at a textile mill.” family affair NB resident donates kidney to brother ;